The other day, Oklahoma State Defensive Coordinator Glenn Spencer tweeted out this graphic.
Which got me thinking how that related to the national scale. If you want to see how the Cowboys compared to the Big 12 and the nation in all 47 statistical categories, you can look at them all here.
There are way too many stats to list them all, so here’s what I am going to do. I’m going to list the ones the Pokes were either leading the conference in, or are in the top 25 nationally. I’m also going to break this down into three posts: defensive stats, offensive stats, and special team/ overall team stats. This specific post focuses on the defensive statistics. Keep your eyes open for both the offensive and special teams stat posts coming soon.
It just so happens that the three stats that Glenn Spencer referenced in his graphic were the only three that fit this criteria (except for scoring defense).
Red Zone Defense - 0.750
The Cowboys only allowed opposing offenses to score 75 percent of the time when they got in the red zone. Good for 13th in the nation and the conference best, just as Spencer alluded to in his graphic. It was Vanderbilt that claimed the top spot, only allowing opponents to score on 65.3 percent of their trips to the red zone.
Scoring Defense - 26.5 points per game allowed
This is another Spencer-referenced stat. Yes, the Cowboys were third in the Big 12 (behind Kansas State and West Virginia), but it isn’t great, as they rank 53rd in the nation. Alabama (or as I like to call them, the 33rd NFL team - I still think they could beat Cleveland) led the nation with a mere 13.0 points allowed per game. I know this doesn’t fit the criteria I posted above, but it would just be odd to ignore one of coach’s points of emphasis.
Turnovers Gained - 25
This is the final of the three stats listed by Spencer in his graphic. Three Big 12 teams tied for the top spot in the conference, as well as the 24th spot in the nation. The Cowboys, Wildcats, and Mountaineers were all nine-turnovers-gained short of tying Washington, the leader in the country.
There aren’t as many defensive stats recorded and sorted out as there are offensive stats and special teams and overall team stats. Check back tomorrow to see how Mason Rudolph and the Cowboys offense did this season.